Acceptance – The Way Ahead

Syamala Monie

I was a school teacher with a great passion for teaching. The fact that I started my career at the age of forty made it all the more challenging for me. Ten years into my job, I contracted paratyphoid, not once but twice. The medication left me with mild hearing impairment. As years went by it started getting worse. It was difficult to manage a class of sixty children and I had to leave the job. I went for an audiogram and it showed severe to profound neurological hearing loss in both ears. The doctor said there was no treatment for it. But I did not want people to know that I had a problem. In social gatherings I would try and lip read or anticipate the question in the given context and answer. Very often the answer would not even be relevant to the discussion. I started avoiding people or would sit quietly when among a group.

Around this time I attended a Parisamvada session by Dr. Jayadeva and Hansaji. I put forward the question. “If one has a physical handicap, what is the best method to tackle it?” Dr Jayadeva’s answer was short and sweet. “If it cannot be cured try and accept it. That is the way ahead.”

Those words gave me clarity. I realized I was wasting my energy by fighting the situation. Soon I got a pair of hearing aids. I would request people to talk a bit loudly. With acceptance life was much lighter. During one of the morning strolls with Hansaji I expressed my wish to do the teacher’s training. But I was still very apprehensive. She encouraged me to try it out and I felt really happy when I completed the training within the stipulated time. I enjoyed making lesson plans and giving lessons and talks. More than anything I have found a place in the great ‘Yoga family’ with so many friends and the list is still growing.

Published in the June 2011 edition of Yoga & Total Health Magazine.

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